There are Maya academic scholars who have looked into the 2012 claims.
Dr. Ed Barnhart, who founded the Maya Exploration Center, has been giving lectures on it for the last 4 years. I had conversations with him on this topic in August of 2007. Ed has always spoken well of John Jenkins.
Last night I read the entire E-mail exchange that occured on the MEC website. I was impressed with the quality of the exhanges. John has managed to cultivate relationships with Maya scholars to his benefit. There is a lot of research existing or being conducted that is unpublished. John now has some access to unpublished information and he earned it.
I saw the exchange boiled down in essence to whether or not the upcoming 13th Baktun is the end of a great cycle and whether there are hidden and very subtle clues in the record where the king was being linked to the 13th Baktun and the Dark Rift. John is trying to make that case. His opponent Stan is of the opinion that the 20th Baktun is the end of a great cycle and not the 13th. Stan uses the clear Pacal reference where he is linked to the 20th (plus 8 days) Baktun. This is a date that occures on 4772 A.D. John is dismissive of the Pacal reference judging from his tone in his E-mails on point.
I have waited for over 8 years to see if the Pacal connector date of 4772 A.D. would emerge in the 2012 discussion. An interesting aside, Pacal's tomb was found in July, 1952. The 13th Baktun date will occur in the 60th arriversary year of the discovery.
It took the academic argument between John and Stan to bring out the Pacal card out of the deck.